PNC Bank Review: Options for Saving, Investing and More

PNC checking accounts and other features could fit your needs.

With all the banking options available today there’s no reason not to take your business to a bank that can most closely meet your financial needs. PNC Bank is a full-service bank with 2,600 branches and 9,000 ATMs across 19 states. The bank also offers a host of online banking tools and services for customer convenience. Find out if PNC Bank is one of the best banks for you and your money.

PNC Bank Pros and Cons
  • Variety of management and planning tools
  • Options to waive monthly deposit account fees
  • Boost interest rates with PNC’s relationship rate
  • Less competitive deposit account interest rates
  • Higher fee structure than some other banks
  • Limited PNC Bank locations

What You Need to Know About PNC Bank

Best for:

  • People who live in select Midwest, Northeast or Southern states where brick-and-mortar branches are located
  • People who are interested in opening multiple accounts and linking them for added benefits

Good to Know: Here’s Your PNC Routing Number

PNC Bank at a Glance

Although PNC Bank offers a variety of benefits, here are some worth highlighting:

Key Benefits of PNC Bank
  • Full suite of banking and deposit products
  • Checking accounts waive or reimburse at least some non-network ATM fees
  • Earn bonus cash when you open and use a PNC Virtual Wallet product

PNC Checking Accounts

PNC Bank offers three traditional checking accounts and three checking accounts that offer the added benefit of the online money management tools of PNC’s Virtual Wallet.

Standard Checking

Best for: People looking for a basic checking account with a low deposit requirement to avoid fees

  • Select fee reimbursement for non-PNC Bank ATM transactions
  • Ability to earn higher relationship rates with a linked Standard Savings account
  • Unlimited check writing
  • Free bill pay
  • Low $500 average monthly deposit requirement; other banks have higher balance thresholds to avoid checking account fees

Performance Checking

Best for: People who maintain an average monthly balance of $2,000 or more

  • Select fee reimbursement for non-PNC Bank ATM transactions, plus the possibility of reimbursement for other banks’ surcharge fees
  • Ability to earn bonus rewards with the addition of a select PNC credit card
  • Accounts earn interest with balances of $2,000 or more; other banks’ interest-bearing checking accounts can have much higher balance requirements
  • One free savings or money market account
  • Higher relationship rates on a Standard Savings or Premier Money Market account

Performance Select Checking

Best for: People who want everything PNC Performance Checking offers plus valuable extras

  • No charges for non-PNC bank ATM use; other banks’ fees reimbursed
  • Up to eight free savings, money market or checking accounts
  • Discount availability for certain personal loans and lines of credit
  • Up to $10,000 worth of identity-theft reimbursement insurance

PNC Savings Accounts

PNC Bank offers two savings account options: one for children and one for adults. Here’s what you need to know about each.

S is for Savings Account

Best for: Children under 18

  • Kid-friendly with a financial learning center containing Sesame Street tips
  • $25 minimum opening deposit
  • Interest-earning threshold starts at $1
  • No monthly service charge if under 18, a $300 balance is maintained or an automatic transfer of at least $25 happens once a month

Standard Savings Account

Best for: Adults who like automatic savings and the ability to earn higher than standard rates.

  • $25 minimum opening deposit
  • Earn higher relationship rates when you link a select PNC checking account; standard rates are not as competitive as some banks offer
  • Savings goals made easy with PNC’s auto savings tool
  • Overdraft protection when linked to PNC checking account

Check Out: Average Savings Account Interest Rates

PNC Money Market Account

PNC Bank only offers one money market account: Premiere Money Market. Before deciding to open this account, however, consider the average monthly balance to avoid fees. Some banks have lower balance requirements.

Best for: People who will find it easy to maintain at last a $5,000 average monthly balance to avoid fees.

  • Higher balances to increase interest earnings
  • Free withdrawals and transfers
  • Unlimited deposits
  • Automatic savings tool
  • Online access for up to 90 days of prior deposit tickets and details

Other PNC Products: PNC Mortgage Review

PNC Certificates of Deposit

With a CD, you can enjoy a predictable rate of return on your investment. Compare these rates with other banks’ rates to make sure that PNC Bank CD rates are competitive.

Best for: People who don’t need immediate access to their money.

  • Wide variety of CD rates and terms that you might not find all in one place
  • Longer terms earn higher rates
  • Better interest return than savings or money market accounts

Learn: Money-Making Strategies for Current CD Interest Rates

PNC Personal Credit Cards

Whether you’re seeking cash back or rewards cards, PNC offers four credit card options to meet your needs.

PNC Cash Rewards Visa Credit Card

Best for: People who want to earn at least 1 percent and up to 4 percent cash back on purchases.

  • Earn 1 percent on any purchase, 2 percent on groceries, 3 percent on dining or fast food  and 4 percent on gas; highest cash back on gas and dining when compared to similar cards issued by other banks
  • Automatic cash back; no tracking involved

PNC Core Visa Credit Card

Best for: People who want a lower initial interest rate

  • No interest applies to balance transfers made within 90 days of opening for first 15 billing cycles; some banks allow only 60 days to make interest-free transfers
  • No interest applies to purchases for the first 15 billing cycles as long as you carry a balance

PNC Points Visa Credit Card

Best for: People who like to earn and redeem points for rewards like gift cards, car rentals and hotel accommodations

  • Earn 4 points for every $1 spent
  • Earn bonuses of 25 to 75 percent on all base points, which some banks don’t offer
  • Unlimited earnings on points

PNC Premier Traveler Visa Signature Credit Card

Best for: People who use their credit card for thousands of dollars in purchases per month

  • Earn two miles for every $1 spent with no restrictions; other cards offer tiered rewards, which can restrict the number of miles you can earn
  • Zero percent introductory annual fee; $85 after that
  • No foreign transaction fees

Check Out: How To Open a PNC Bank Account

Reasons to Choose PNC Bank

If there is a branch close to you, consider PNC Bank. As a brick-and-mortar bank with average rates, its in-person customer service option is what distinguishes it. Beyond that, make sure that PNC Bank can offer you the best deals and benefits available on the financial products and services you need by comparing its offerings to those of other banks. You might be able to earn higher rates and avoid account fees more easily elsewhere.

Click through to learn about the 10 best national banks of 2018.

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GOBankingRates is a personal finance and consumer interest rate website owned by ConsumerTrack, Inc., an online marketing company serving top-tier banks, credit unions, and other financial services organizations. Some companies mentioned in this article might be clients of ConsumerTrack, Inc., which serves more than 100 national, local and online financial institutions. Rankings and roundups are completely objective, and no institution, client or otherwise, paid for inclusion or specific placement. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of GOBankingRates alone and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the companies included in the article. All fees and rates are subject to change at the issuers’ discretion. Some interest rates might be short-term or promotional offers only, and it is possible additional terms and conditions must be met in order to obtain the interest rates listed. Rates and availability might vary by region. Verify terms and conditions before opening an account. 

About the Author

Cynthia Measom is a Texas-based writer specializing in finance, business, parenting and education. With almost a decade of online writing experience, her work has appeared on websites such as, The Bump and The Motley Fool. Measom received a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Texas at Austin.